Olympic24: Grand Slam Greg as Germany lie in wait for England men

Olympic24: Grand Slam Greg as Germany lie in wait for England men

26 August 2015 / 06:52

Greg Rutherford finally got his hands on that elusive World Championship gold while England’s men made it through to the final four of the EuroHockey Championships. Here’s our review of the last 24 hours.

  • Mo Farah returns to the Bird’s Nest to contest the 5000m
  • Greg Rutherford leaps into the history books with long jump gold in Beijing
  • England men beat Spain 4-0 to set up a EuroHockey semi-final clash with Germany
  • Aljaz Bedene shocks Gilles Simon
  • Alistair Brownlee is to go under the knife
  • Chris Froome remains 40 seconds off the red jersey in the Vuelta a Espana

Seven heaven in Beijing

Mo Farah 

Mo Farah insists he feels just fine after he returned to the Bird’s Nest for the 5000m at the World Championships.

Just days after claiming 10,000m gold in China, Farah was back in action and despite a stumble he crossed the line in second place in his heat with a time of 13.19.44 minutes.

He will be joined in Saturday’s final by Tom Farrell after he came home fourth in 13:45.29, and Farah believes he is in good shape for the showpiece.

“I feel alright, nearly went down, that’s twice, I hope it doesn’t come third time bad luck,” he said.

“I was thinking even if I went down at that point I knew I had the run back, even if I had run ’75 at that point I would still qualify. 

“I wasn’t even thinking positions, more of the times.  I felt alright, I felt good.  I just have to recover now and get ready.

“I’m pleased for Tom, that’s two of us in the final now. Hopefully we can go out there and do it.

“It’s been an amazing team spirit at the hotel, it brings back all the ‘Super Saturday’ memories with myself, Jess (Ennis-Hill) and Greg (Rutherford).  I was watching and cheering for Greg at the hotel last night.  It was amazing.”

European and Commonwealth silver medallist Lynsey Sharp, Shelayna Oskan-Clarke and Jenny Meadows all made it through to the 800m semi-finals, while Lawrence Clarke made it through the 110m hurdles heats as one of the fastest losers.

And Sophie Hitchon’s best throw of 71.07m saw her qualify for the hammer final in eighth spot.

Grand Slam Greg

Greg Rutherford 

Greg Rutherford was struggling to take it all in after he completed his collection of major titles after winning long jump gold at the World Championships in Beijing.

Heading to China Rutherford was looking to get his hands on an elusive World Championship gold with this the only title missing on his CV after topping the podium at an Olympic and Commonwealth Games and the European Championships.

And the 28-year-old looked in ominous form early on, taking the lead with an early effort of 8.29m before Americans Mike Hartfield and Jeff Henderson exited the competition – the latter having qualified for the final in first place.

But Rutherford wasn’t done there, recording the second best jump of his career when he leapt 8.41m with his fourth-round effort.

“I’m bit lost for words, what an incredible night. That was an accumulation of so many people’s work – Dan Pfaff, what an amazing lead coach and Jonas [Tawiah-Doodoo], who’s been helping him as well.

“Andy Burke the therapist who’s been here has helped me as well and more than anything my family and friends, who have been unreal. They’ve built me a long jump pit in the garden, and that’s pretty special.

“Dan basically told me after the third round, ‘what an earth are you playing at, why are you fouling?  Just get one in and close the night.’

“The next round I managed to catch one and I hope 8.41m is acceptable for people this time. I’m pretty sure that is a stadium record, so I’ll take that – maybe I’m not too bad of a long jumper.”

England men through to semi-final

Ashley Jackson 

Ashley Jackson is urging his England team to keep their standards as high as possible after storming into the semi-final of the EuroHockey Championship in London with a 4-0 victory over Spain.

England made a bright start and five minutes into the second quarter Jackson put the hosts in front before Barry Middleton added a quick fire second.

Chris Griffiths added a third before Jackson rounded off a fine performance in the final few minutes.

It means that England will now face Germany in their final-four clash and Jackson knows his side face a tough test.

“We’ve played well tonight but it still feels like a little bit of a missed opportunity because we play the Germans in the semi-final now,” said Jackson.

“We’re confident going into the game but we have to avoid a repeat of the lack of performance like happened against the Dutch. That was really frustrating but it was nice to bounce back from that tonight.

“It was very important to come out and play well today, but we need to do that in the next game, too. If we play like we did against the Netherlands we’ll be playing for third and fourth.

“We’re capable of bouncing back from that but that’s not the team we want to be. We want to be the team that plays well in the semi-final and is competing for gold medals.

“I have 100 per cent faith in our team. I know that a solid performance will give us a great chance of getting to the final. We are certainly good enough to win, it’s an exciting time.”

Bedene beats Simon

British number two Aljaz Bedene produced a shock win over world number 11 Gilles Simon to reach the last 16 of the Winston-Salem Open.

Wildcard Bedene survived two match points to overcome the top seed 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (8-6).

The 26-year-old will face Simon's fellow Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert in the third round of the North Carolina tournament.

"I haven't beaten someone in the top ten yet, so this is my best win," he said.

"It was tough. Gilles is known as one of the toughest guys on the tour. Coming back after losing the first set, and having served for it, is never easy."

Brownlee to have surgery


Olympic triathlon champion Alistair Brownlee will have surgery on a persistent ankle injury on Wednesday.

The 27-year-old world and European champion could still clinch his Olympic place for Rio at an assessment race in 2016.

"My left ankle has been giving me bother since 2013, with a range of different niggles," he said. "Getting it sorted gives me the best chance of being 100% for next season."

Froome stays 40 seconds back

Alejandro Valverde climbed to victory on stage four of the Vuelta a Espana as Johan Esteban Chaves retained the overall lead and Chris Froome stayed 40 seconds off the pace.

Valverde produced a late surge on the sharp final climb to the finish in Vejer de la Frontera to beat Peter Sagan into second place and Daniel Moreno into third.

Chaves finished on the same time in tenth place to stay top of the general classification, five seconds ahead of second-placed Tom Dumoulin and 15 seconds in front of third-placed Nicolas Roche, who was fourth on the day.

Froome finished on the same time as Valverde to remain 40 seconds adrift of the red jersey respectively, although he was relegated one place overall by Moreno.

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